Advice my parents gave me that stayed with me

Advice my parents gave me that stayed with me

Parents are always on the ‘advice mode’. I used to mentally roll my eyes every time an advice was doled out. But now after becoming a parent I relate to it more than ever. I find myself going on and on about this or that with my daughter whether she likes it or not. I think its the protective parent reflex that kicks in which wants them to prepare for any situation life throws at their kids. Momspresso threw this prompt, ‘Advice my parents gave me that stayed with me’. That got me thinking. There are so many nuggets of wisdom they’ve passed on to me and my sister over the years. Here are some that shine through (in no particular order)

Truth is simpler. You need a good memory to be a good liar. My mom makes a very big deal about it. She herself is truth loving person and always tells us its NOT ok to lie. Even the so called small ones. A lie is a lie. There’s no big or small. By far this is the toughest to live upto. But I’ve tried my best and let me tell you that sooner or later, it establishes your reputation. You instill a sense of trust in people around you. And yes it doesn’t  tax your memory. You sleep easy! 

Be yourself. Easy you’d say. Oh no! Not at all. Going au naturel ain’t that simple. But again, people around us know what to expect. I believe I do have a reputation of ‘jo dikhta hai wohi milta hai’ 

Remember the lessons, forget the mistakes. This is probably one of the best. We make mistakes, berate ourselves and waste so much energy. But my parents would always tell me, everyone makes mistakes. Only fools insist on repeating them. And unless we learn from our mistakes and remember the lessons, we’ll just be stuck in the rut of mistakes and regret. 

Don’t run after people. They’ll come to you and stay for the right reasons. When I left for medical school, I was pretty vulnerable. I was so far from my comfort zone and there was enough hostility around. I was in tears on my first trip home. Here’s what my dad said, “Bhaagti firti thi duniya, jab talab karte the hum. Jab se tauba humne ki, wo bekarar aane ko hain” (when I was running after people, they would act pricey. The moment I stopped bothering they wanted to be with me). It was hard but believe me, when I tried, it worked. Talk about how attitude matters!

Trust in God but Do Something. God was omnipresent in our household. We prayed Him for courage and direction but my parents saw to it that faith NEVER equated laziness! 

Good things come to those who wait. Patience is a virtue unknown to a child. But my folks saw to it that we imbibe it,however fidgety it made us.

Be an optimist but carry an umbrella. Positive attitude is all good but we need to be prepared. You can’t pray to God to win a lottery when you haven’t even bought the tickets. 

Look for the silver lining. There HAS to be one. Some days we would come home from school all whiny. But we were made to rack our brains till we came up with something positive. Till today, I can’t take that out of my system. There has to be something to be grateful for. 

Change is the only permanent thing. Change is very disconcerting. And thanks to my father’s job, it was a part of our lives. But that made us appreciate the different cultures and also the similarities. I think we are far more tolerant than a lot of my counterparts. 

 I believe whatever little worthwhile I have in me is because of the value system instilled by my parents by their example and not by their preaching. They first practiced it themselves before they would give my sister and I any gyaan. There was no dichotomy in their words and actions. That is probably the most important lesson they have taught us.


First published –<>

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